Cabir Worm is the first computer worm that was designed to infect mobile phones. It was first found in 2004 and at that time it affected many mobile phones with Symbian OS. It is also known as Caribe Worm.
Who developed Cabir Worm
Experts believe that Cabir Worm was first developed by a group of international hackers called 29A. They wanted to prove that mobile phones are also vulnerable to malware. And so they developed this worm to catch world attention.
Infection and Spread of Cabir Worm
The victim first receives a file named caribe.sis in phone messaging inbox. If the victim cannot understand the risk and opens the file and chooses to install it, Cabir Worm infects the mobile.
Immediately after installation, Cabir Worm gets activated and before the victim can understand the effects, it starts replicating it and infects other mobiles exploiting Bluetooth. Experts say, the worm starts infecting other mobiles over Bluetooth even before the victim realizes it and disables his own Bluetooth.
After infecting a mobile, Cabir Worm writes the word “Caribe” on the screen of the mobile and it gets activated automatically every time the mobile is turned on.
There is another version of Cabir Worm which is capable to replicate itself not only via Bluetooth, but also using MMS. It is called Mabir Worm.
How harmful is Cabir Worm
Cabir Worm was first designed with the purpose of demonstrating vulnerabilities of mobile phones. Reportedly it does not cause much harm other than showing the message “Caribe” on the screen.
But, once it starts replicating, it searches for other mobile phones exploiting the Bluetooth connections. As a result, the battery of the mobile drains out very fast.
Mitigation of Cabir Worm
Immediately after Cabir Worm was found, patches were released to mitigate the worm. F-Secure developed a security patch to detect Cabir Worm and delete worm components from related directories.
Significance of Cabir Worm
Cabir Worm has a lots of significance in security of mobile phones. This worm demonstrated that mobile phones are also not safe from malware. And, it was a wake up call for all security experts.